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Monday News: Birds of a feather

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WOODHOUSE GOES AFTER 3RD KAVANAUGH ACCUSER IN TWITTER RANT: “This woman is a criminal,” N.C. Republican Party executive director Dallas Woodhouse tweeted on Sunday, referring to Julie Swetnick, the third woman to accuse Kavanaugh of inappropriate behavior. “One way or another,” he wrote. “She either was a part of some massive criminal conspiracy to facilitate child rape, as an adult. Or more likely, she lied to Congress and her attorney knew it. She should go to prison, period.” Swetnick said in the statement that she saw Kavanaugh at least 10 times “at parties where women were verbally abused, inappropriately touched, made ‘disoriented’ with alcohol or drugs and ‘gang raped,’” according to The New York TImes. Swetnick said in the statement that she remembered seeing boys, including Kavanaugh, “lining up outside a bedroom where ‘numerous boys’ were ‘waiting for their ‘turn’ with a girl inside the room,’’ among other accusations. The Times was not able to independently corroborate Swenick’s claims.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article219281075.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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CHRISTINE BLASEY FORD'S PROFILE IN COURAGE: About this there can be no debate: Christine Blasey Ford emerged from her ordeal before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee last Thursday as a REAL American hero. Her measured but firm and detailed recollection of an assault at a gathering of high schoolers captured the focus of the nation. She displayed the kind of courage and selflessness that are the stuff of REAL role models. It is a unique and indelible occasion that regardless of Brett Kavanaugh’s fate will have an impact – from the halls of Congress halls to parent-child conversations at the dinner table. Blasey Ford didn’t spend a morning literally in the national spotlight because there was something in it for her. She came to Washington to tell her story, to tell her truth. She said it was her duty to bring information she felt the committee – and the nation – needed to know.
https://www.wral.com/editorial-christine-blasey-ford-s-profile-in-courage-/17882924/

Saturday News: The Kavanaugh Effect

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IN WAKE OF SUPREME COURT HEARING, MORE WOMEN ARE TELLING THEIR OWN STORIES: The hearings about Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination for Supreme Court are prompting more sexual assault survivors to step forward. One group rallied on the Bicentennial Mall in Raleigh on Friday, not only to speak out against sexual abuse and assault but also to share personal stories. Jennifer Condrey said it's her first time sharing her story publicly. “In my 46 years of life, I have been sexually harassed, touched or threatened more times than I care to count,” she told the crowd. She said she was raped in college. Her attacker was an acquaintance, she said, and her experience is one reason she decided to join the group Friday. The rally was organized by the Carolina Peace Center. Condrey and other attendees said they’ve been following Kavanaugh’s nomination hearing.
https://www.wral.com/after-kavanaugh-testimony-sexual-assault-survivors-share-stories-in-raleigh/178...

Friday News: The company you keep

NC REPUBLICANS WHO SUPPORT KAVANAUGH ENTER HALL OF SHAME: North Carolina Democrats and activists went on the offensive against Republicans for not opposing U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The state Democratic party launched online ads Thursday targeting GOP state legislators who signed an open letter last month supporting Kavanaugh. The ads target suburban districts seen as vulnerable in November's legislative elections. During a U.S. Senate hearing, Kavanaugh again denied he sexually assaulted a woman while they were high school students. The North Carolina chapter of the National Organization for Women, NARAL Pro-Choice NC and other advocacy groups led demonstrations against the state's two Republican U.S. senators through rallies in three different cities.
https://www.wral.com/democrats-activists-hit-n-carolina-gop-on-kavanaugh/17878082/

Thursday News: Frat boys stick together

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IGNORING THE VICTIMS, RICHARD BURR PLEDGES SUPPORT FOR KAVANAUGH: "Democrats made it clear they would stop at nothing to block President Trump’s Supreme Court pick before Judge Kavanaugh was even chosen as the nominee. President Trump has every right to nominate the individual of his choosing to the Supreme Court, and the Senate should go through the normal advice-and-consent process, as it has done for the last 12 weeks," Burr said in a statement. "Immediately following the conclusion of Thursday’s hearing, the Senate Judiciary Committee should vote up or down on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination. I intend to support Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination when it comes before the full Senate." WRAL News asked Burr spokeswoman Caitlin Carroll whether his support could change if unfavorable evidence against Kavanaugh were to come out in the committee hearing. "He intends to support Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination in the full Senate," Carroll responded.
https://www.wral.com/burr-tillis-take-positions-on-kavanaugh-hearing/17874676/

Wednesday News: Highly reprehensible

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LUMBERTON RESIDENTS SEEK CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT AGAINST RAILROAD COMPANY CSX: If they succeed in getting their class certified by the federal judge, that would kick off a class action lawsuit open to anyone who owns property in Lumberton that was damaged during Florence. That could include anything from real estate to a car. It would also include any local business with a claim that it lost income due to flooding from the CSX site. The residents claimed Tuesday in court that that nearly all of the Hurricane Florence flooding in town could’ve been prevented — saving nearly a quarter of a billion dollars in damages to the town and its residents — if only CSX had taken action. Matt Lee is a Raleigh attorney for the Whitfield, Bryson and Mason law firm that’s filing the complaint. He said Lumberton has “a levee system that was designed to prevent this kind of flooding and the one open spot was where CSX had train tracks running underneath I-95. CSX knew about that, and they didn’t do it. They wouldn’t even have had to pay for it.”
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article219005520.html

Tuesday News: Pay-to-play Tim

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GOP SPEAKER HAS QUESTIONS TO ANSWER ON CONTRACTS, LEGISLATION, AND CAMPAIGN DONATIONS: Whitaker said KNOW Bio’s co-founder and board chairman Neal Hunter had given Moore the contract. What Whitaker, who left the company in April, said she didn’t know is that four years earlier, Moore as the powerful Rules Committee chairman had helped Hunter with a controversial development that was in danger of failing. Moore ran legislation that forced the city of Durham to provide water and sewer for the 751 South project, which will place 1,300 residences and 600,000 square feet of offices and shops on 166 acres near Jordan Lake. Mitchell is a friend and campaign supporter of Moore’s. In 2015, when Moore became speaker, the House voted Mitchell to the UNC Board of Governors. State election records show since 2013, Mitchell and his wife have contributed $30,300 to Moore’s campaign fund; Hunter and his wife have given $33,300.
https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/politics-government/article218576350.html

Monday News: Implausible denialism

DUKE ENERGY SEZ COAL ASH YOU'RE SEEING IS NOT REALLY THERE: Nearby, a gray film floated around the banks of the river, which Matt Butler, a program director for Sound Rivers, a nonprofit that monitors the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico River Basins, identified as the lighter parts of coal ash. The heavier components, he said, sink to the bottom or are suspended in the water. “I think this is a very significant spill,” Kemp Burdette, the Cape Fear riverkeeper, said in an interview Saturday. “There were numerous breaches that have all contributed to this ... given the aerial photography and the satellite imagery that we have seen it looks like a lot of coal ash was kind of pulled down to those breaches and out to the Cape Fear River. That is certainly what we saw yesterday when we were on the water.” But Duke Energy disagreed that ash is contaminating the water, suggesting that Burdette may have seen nontoxic byproducts floating in the water.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/business/article218870635.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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LEGISLATORS SHOULD TAP HUGE RAINY DAY FUND TO SPEED HURRICANE FLO RECOVERY: The truth is that North Carolina has the resources to meet the immediate recovery needs – and address broader policies and needs including effective alternatives to massive hog and poultry waste lagoons that have overflowed in the storm dumping millions of gallons of raw manure into streams and rivers. Legislators boast that the state’s rainy day fund has more than $2 billion dollars in it – along with another $650 million in unspent money from the 2017-18 budget. There is no better time to tap some of those funds than now. Hurricane Flo was a rainy day if there ever was one. Be sure, voters will be watching to see if the legislature chooses to play partisan political games or works diligently with the governor to address the dire needs of suffering citizens. The special session comes almost exactly a month before Election Day 2018. See you at the polls.
https://www.wral.com/editorial-legislators-should-tap-massive-rainy-day-fund-to-speed-recovery-from-...

Saturday News: Toxic nightmare

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FLOODED DUKE ENERGY SUTTON PLANT MIXING COAL ASH INTO CAPE FEAR RIVER: Duke Energy confirmed Friday that floodwaters from Hurricane Florence have spilled into a coal ash storage pond near Wilmington and could be washing the toxic waste into the Cape Fear River. The river had been rising for days, and Duke had issued an emergency warning Thursday that a breech was likely. The 47-year-old coal ash pond is separated from the Cape Fear River by Sutton Lake, a public fishing lake used as a source of water to cool a coal-burning power plant that was shut down in 2013. Because of rising waters, the river, lake and ash pond are now part of one water system, but Duke has installed a steel barrier at the ash pond to prevent the waste from moving in the reverse direction back into the river. “Its all mixing,” said Duke spokeswoman Paige Sheehan. “We know that water is being discharged from the ash basin.”
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/business/article218791660.html

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